Converting Citibank Salary Account to Zero Balance Account

Citibank salary account (AKA Citibank Suvidha Account) is hassle free and convenient – as long as you get your salary credited to it (from same employer with whom you opened the account). Then a day comes when you switch job, and your Citibank Suvidha Salary account is not a Zero balance account anymore. When your salary account gets converted to a regular savings account you must maintain a Net Relationship Value (NRV) of Rs 1 Lakhs. NRV of Rs 1 Lakh is for case where salary account is converted to Regular savings account, for a new Regular Savings account one needs to maintain NRV of Rs 2 Lakhs – a princely amount for a savings account!

For those looking how to convert Citibank salary account to zero balance account online, A permanent change to zero balance account is not possible. But don’t get disheartened yet, I will share a closest alternative that you can consider. I was able to get all balance requirements waived off for 6 months with a call to Citibank customer care team. That should be sufficient time for you to plan and migrate out of your Citibank account.

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Steps to get waiver of Minimum Balance charges from Citibank

1. Call Citibank customer service: Dial 1860 210 2484 or +91 (22) 4955 2484 (Cross check latest CitiPhone number from official link

2. Inform customer care personnel, that you switched job and would be joining a different employer. Going forward you would not receive salary credit from current employer and would like to close your account.

3. Citibank customer service personnel would ask who is the employer that you are joining. They ask this to check if new employer mentioned has a tie up with Citibank for salary account.

4. You may answer them saying something like you are joining a very small firm (or a startup) that has no tie up with any bank to offer Salary account.

5. Now Citibank customer care personnel would probably offer you a waiver of balance requirement on your savings account for the next 6 months, to stop you from closing your account (If you were not provided such an option, just inquire about possibilities for a temporary waiver on balance requirement)

6. Post your request approval, you should receive a confirmation mail from with subject “We would love to continue serving you.” confirming waiver of minimum balance charges for next 6 months (refer screen shot below). The email was received on same day when I spoke with Citibank.

7. I also got this reference SMS: “On your account number *****1234 the ref no for the query raised is 123456789 – Citi”

(Note: I have changed reference numbers with 123…)

Convert Citibank Salary Account to Zero Balance Account
Convert Citibank Salary Account to Zero Balance Account

When does a Citibank Salary Account get Converted to Regular Savings Account

If there is no credit of salary in your account for 90 days, your Citibank salary account would get converted to a Regular savings account. You would be required to maintain Net Relationship Value (NRV) of 1 Lakh Rupees from 91st day onwards. So, if you plan and time your call to Citibank towards end of 90 day period, effectively one can manage to get up to 9 months of grace period. Make use of this 9 months wisely and fix any dependency that is built on your Citibank account (delinking from all investments, insurance products, standing instructions and any other mandates).

The method discussed above to convert Citibank salary account to zero balance account is not a fool proof one but requesting Citibank customer service team is one way to get 6 month waiver on minimum balance / Net Relationship Value requirements. If you don’t prefer reaching out to CitiPhone support, alternatively you can send them an online query.

Sending online query to Citibank customer care:

  • Login to your Citibank account
  • You will see “Quick Links” drop down menu at right side top of page. From this drop down menu pick “Your queries”.
  • Next step is bit tricky. Citibank would let you send a query only after forcing you to take a look at their help page – As a result you would have to click the link mentioned in next step twice.
  • Click on “Compose Mail” (you can find this towards bottom of page). This will open a pop up. Click on ‘Ask Me’ button. This will open a new pop up window with various help topics. Simply close this window.
  • Click once again on “Compose Mail” you clicked last time. Now you would be taken to actual page where you can input your query.
  • Pick your account number from drop down, for “Nature of query” select “ACCOUNT OPENING/CONVERSION/CLOSURE“. For “Sub Query Category” just pick “None of the above”. Below pic shows how this page/options would look.
  • Fill your request message under “Compose your query here:” box and hit the “Send” button. Typically, Citibank responds to your query in 2 working days.
How to send query to Citibank
Sending online query to Citibank

Citibank Net Relationship Value (NRV) and Average balance

Net Relationship Value does not mean just your savings account balance. You can meet your NRV requirements by creating Fixed Deposit, investing in Mutual funds and Insurance premium payment via Citibank. If you are not able to maintain NRV required you would be charged Rs 600 per month (or) 1% of amount by which you fall short of NRV, which ever is lower. For e.g., in the month of May say you managed to have a NRV of Rs 75,000. This falls short of Rs 1 Lakh by Rs 25,000. You would be charged 1% of this short fall amount i.e., Rs 250 in the subsequent month of June as per our example.

How to Check Net Relationship Value in Citibank?

Maintaining Net Relationship value is key to avoid charges levied by Citibank for not meeting balance requirements. Ensuring you have required Net Relationship Value would save you up to Rs 600 per month. You can check your Net Relationship Value by logging into Citibank online and clicking on “View Account Summary” link on the left panel. You can observe “Net Relationship Value for <Month>-<Year>” mentioned here. Refer below image for illustration.

How to check Citibank Net Relationship Value
Finding your Citibank Net Relationship Value


  1. Thanks for the article.
    I have a question. Can the account not be converted to a “CITIBANK BASIC SAVINGS BANK DEPOSIT ACCOUNT / SMALL ACCOUNT” which is a zero balance account?

    • In theory all the banks have this account as it may be a government mandate to offer (Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana Account) such a account type. May not be a practical choice with most of the private banks.. with Citibank you may as well forget it. My guess is they might make you visit branch and make you do all paper work in person, effectively discouraging you.
      And even if you manage to successfully open the Basic savings account, it comes with many restrictions.
      Two of the biggest drawbacks would be:
      1. At any point your balance can’t be above Rs 50,000
      2. You can’t withdraw more than Rs 10,000 in a day (aggregate amount in a day and not amount per transaction)

  2. Hi,
    Is there a way I can close my citibank salary account without visiting the branch.
    And what will happen if I keep my balance as zero balance in salary account even when there is no salary being credited in my account.

    • Hi,
      Yes. You can close your Citibank account without visiting the branch. Speak to their customer care and ask for a closure or just login to Citibank website and contact customer support.
      If you don’t receive any salary credit in your Citibank salary account for three months then your salary account would get converted to a regular savings account and you would be fined if sufficient balance is not maintained.

  3. Thanks, Buddy, it worked. I called CITI, and they provided me a waiver for 6 months and also waived the fee of Rs. 600, but they couldn’t waive the SGST and GST which our government is very keen on ripping off our hard earned money.

    • Glad to know 🙂

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